William Correro column

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Pregame flyovers something to see

By William Correro

This had to have been the strangest Championship Game I have ever worked. It was a good tight game even if Ainge made a couple of ill-advised passes. There was really no need to try to force a completion into double coverage.

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The story that ESPN broke the morning of the game about LSU Coach Les Miles taking the Michigan job was unbelievable. The timing just didn’t make sense.

I know how they have agents and there are tons of secret negotiations going on within the last four weeks of the season but that kind of information is very rarely discovered and released. As we were riding over to the Georgia Dome two hours before kickoff we heard that a press conference had been called by Coach Miles and he was denying the story and staying at LSU. Lord, what’s next?

Anyway, CBS was in high gear when I got there with the coverage of all these extra bites of hot info. The game’s outcome didn’t matter but I was very glad LSU made it in Sunday’s BCS votes to go the BCS National Championship Game. I just hope they embarrass Ohio State worse than Florida did in last year’s title game. And they are very capable of doing just that.

I’ve got to tell about the fly over we had in the Florida State at Florida game a few weeks ago. If you’ve been to any college game in recent history, you’ve seen the military jets or helicopters make a fly over of the stadium just as the National Anthem is ending. Those are always great but the one they did over the Swamp was a notch better. The details had been in the previous day’s paper but I hadn’t seen it. Just as the National Anthem ended, an U.S. Air Force logo appeared on both scoreboard screens and then changed to a black and white image with cross hairs. This turned out to be targeting data from a new target designator system attached to an inbound F-15E Strike Eagle aircraft. The weapons officer in the aircraft would use his controls to move the aim point around the stadium as they were streaking in at high speed. The press box and then the “F” at the center of the field were a few choices. After about twenty seconds of this the F-15 along with two F-16s escorting came over the stadium low with afterburners cooking. And they were gone. The sobering thought was that one attack aircraft could use this system to deliver enough weapons to turn the stadium and the surrounding area into plasma that quick. Sure glad they’re on our side.